Jiang Zemin in 1978

It was November 12, 1978, early in the morning, in front of the VW high-rise in Wolfsburg. 14 men from the People’s Republic stood at the entrance. They seemed a bit lost. And in their badly fitting suits, they did not look like government representatives of the world’s most populous nation.

One of them handed the VW representatives a sheet with the names of the delegation members and their functions. There were no telephone numbers on it. Later, one of the delegation members confessed that there was no way to print business cards in all of Beijing in time for departure. That is how backward China was at the time.

A somewhat gaunt delegation member from the third row introduced himself as the Director of the Foreign Affairs Department in the Ministry of Engineering. Other than that, he spoke little. Only his oversized glasses stood out at the time. The name of the cadre: Jiang Zemin. 15 years later, he became President of the People’s Republic. His visit to Wolfsburg in 1978 left a lasting impression on him. Under his tenure as head of state, Volkswagen rose to become the undisputed number one on China’s car market. Now Jiang has passed away at the age of 96.
Michael Radunski has written his obituary: https://lnkd.in/ePVkui9v

Judge Tang in SF: I travelled all over China for two months in 1977. I witnessed the mass poverty and backwardness that pervaded China. From an impoverished country where it’s leaders didn’t even have business cards to give out to other county’s leaders to being the largest manufacturer of country in the world In less than 50 years is nothing short of a miracle. We should give the Chinese people and it’s leadership the credit they deserve. And support it’s continuing growth and progress towards a humane society, one that will serve as a model for the world.

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